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8-Year-Old Girl Tells How She Survived The River Car Crash Which Killed Her Family

"I tried to go up for air."

Chloe-May Kabealo was the only survivor of the horrific car crash which killed her mother, brother and sister when their car plunged into a swollen river on April 3rd. 

The 8-year-old managed to escape from the sinking vehicle, swim to shore and run to the nearest house for help, but by the time emergency services arrived, it was too late to save her family. 

Now, the brave girl has spoken out about the horrific incident, saying, “I unbuckled my seatbelt and I tried to go up for air.”

“And I just kept floating up out of something, and then I got out,” she told reporters, while standing beside her father, Matthew, at a community fundraiser. 

The car skidded off roads and into Tweed River, NSW, in the aftermath of Cyclone Debbie, which flooded both roads and the river. 

Photo via Facebook

Chloe’s mother Stephanie is being hailed a hero, as she fought until her last breath to save her three children. Unfortunately, Stephanie, her daughter Ella-Jade, 11, and son Jacob, eight, didn’t make it out of the car alive. 

“They were all loved and they will never be forgotten,” Chloe said of her family. 

NSW Police Superintendent Wayne Starling said in the days following the tragedy that Stephanie would be alive but chose to fight to save her children.

“I can tell you the mother was trying to get one of her children out of the car when she passed away. She was with the child, holding the child,” he said.

Stephanie was found cradling her son Jacob when the car was pulled from the river. 

The fundraiser, organised by police, helped to raise thousands for Chloe and her father and a GoFundMe page has raised over $156,000.

Photo via Facebook

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